China on Friday said that India’s decision to remove Article 370 on Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcate the state into two union territories through constitutional amendments had challenged its sovereign interests and violated bilateral agreements. Speaking to reporters after the closed-door meeting of the United Nations Security Council, China’s Permanent Ambassador to the UN, Zhang Jun, said that the ‘unilateral practice by India is not valid in relation to China.’
He said, “What should be pointed out that India’s action has challenged China’s sovereign interests and violated bilateral agreements on maintaining peace and stability in the border areas. China is very much seriously concerned. We wish to emphasise that such unilateral practice by India is not valid in relation to China.”
Jun said that the ‘situation is already very tense and dangerous right now there (in Kashmir).’ He said, “I’m sure you’ve all noted the remarks made by our foreign minister Wang Yi during the meetings with the Pakistani foreign minister and also the Indian foreign minister. China holds the view that the issue of Jammu and Kashmir is the issue left from history between India and Pakistan. According to relevant Security Council resolutions, the status of Kashmir is an internationally recognised dispute. The Kashmir issue should be resolved through peaceful means in accordance with the UN charter, relevant Security Council resolutions and through bilateral agreements. This represents the international community’s consensus.”
Jun added, “It is obvious that the constitutional amendments by India has changed the status quo in Kashmir causing tension in the region. China is deeply concerned about the current situation and opposes any unilateral action.”
Earlier, India’s ambassador to UN, Syed Akbaruddin, had said that today’s closed-door meetings had ‘no external ramifications.’ He had told reporters, “The recent decisions taken by the government of India and our legislative bodies are intended to ensure that good governance is promoted, social-economic development is enhanced for our people in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.”
Pakistan had approached the United Nations to convene an emergency meeting of the Security Council to discuss the Indian government’s decision to revoke Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan had received support from its ally China. Akbaruddin said that India was committed to gradually removing all restrictions in Kashmir, which has been under complete lockdown since 5 August. Akbaruddin said that ‘the change (of Jammu and Kashmir’s status) is internal to India.’ “India remains committed to ensure that the situation there (in Jammu and Kashmir) remains calm and peaceful,” Akbaruddin added.